Monday, August 10, 2009

An Embargo on Breeding? Tough Talk in Ireland on Tackling Equine ...

From: The Jurga Report: Horse Health Headlines

August 10 aricle BLOG AAHS
Billy Twomey and Je T'Aime Flamenco in the Aga Khan Cup yesterday in Dublin (Horse Sport Ireland photo)

What's wrong with this picture? One of the world's great horse events is going on right now. In Ireland, the Royal Dublin Horse Show is hosting not only the greatest show jumpers in the world, but dozens of classes for more than a thousand local horses, riders and hunts, and $1 Million in prize money.

Flowers bloom, immaculately-turned out children sit on perfect ponies. It is the great showcase of Irish horse civilization. Cleaned up, brushed off, and well, yes, he is for sale...

How big is this show? The class results are published in the newspapers just as we would read the football scores.

But this year, there's a cloud over the sun that shines on Dublin. I've just read the address by Jimmy Cahill, director of the Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. He has warned of an unprecedented crisis in abandoned and underfed horses in Ireland, with a much worse toll to be taken as winter approaches.

Reading his words echoes all we here in America are dealing with: overcrowded rescue farms, underfunded charities, poor hay crops, and an overabundance of young horses that don't seem to be finding their way to training and good homes.

“The Dublin SPCA has rescued over 100 horses so far this year in Dublin alone,” Mr Cahill said. ”Thirty-one have had to be euthanized as they were beyond saving and the situation is set to deteriorate in the coming months."

Cahill blames the "Celtic Tiger" boom years of prosperity in Ireland, when everyone could afford a horse, or thought they could. And everyone with a mare bred her.

But while in America we debate about horse slaughter as an answer (what was the question again?), in Ireland Cahill simply and eloquently has called on equine welfare and sport agencies to support him in an outright embargo on horse breeding.

That's right. Just turn off the tap. Stop adding horses to the bloated population. Stabilize what's already on the ground.

“It is imperative that no more horses are bred in this country until all of those currently in existence have been rescued and rehomed," he said.

“Until we as a nation can take responsibility for the animals in suffering around the country, we should not be allowing for further unlicensed breeding,” Cahill concluded. He also mentioned Ireland's excellent reputation in the world for its standard of equine care and welfare, and the need to preserve the high regard in which Irish horses and horsemanship are held.

posted by Fran Jurga @ Saturday, August 08, 2009


  1. Brevard County Florida, where NASA declines, is considering the same idea for dogs and cats. When you go to license your intact animals, the fees will be a much higher percent than those animals spayed or neutered. Legitimate breeders would pay higher fees as well, as they would all have to be licensed and inspected breeders.
    Why NOT do this to horses? The Thoroughbreds are all listed in a breed book and tattooed. Why not "microchip" a foal at the first Coggins test, listing the breeders information. No chip/Coggins paperwork? No transport and enforce it! Recently I heard of a tattoo reported back to a breeder here by a rescue and that breeder is taking that horse back - as it should be. There has got to be some responsibility in breeding, just as the small animal breeds are trying.

  2. Health of horses should be maintain by proper food and by giving them a proper run.Otherwise horse will become costliest for us in the horse race because now a days many people done a blind faith on the winning horses,but we can't say that he will be the winner in the next race. for sale in Ireland